Date of Conferral

1-1-2009

Degree

Ph.D.

School

Management

Advisor

Anthony Lolas

Abstract

Even though the current level of communication and information sharing is greater than it has ever been throughout the history of the construction industry, the problem under investigation stems from the results of current research that indicate that many major projects have difficulty in achieving client expectations, resulting in a negative image of the construction industry. The purpose of this study was to analyze the impact on the level of trust in the use of information systems between construction firms and their clients. The theoretical foundations of this research were based in interdependence and coordination theories. While information systems enable improved communication processes, coordination and interdependency are central to mutually successful completion of construction projects. However, there is a lack of a prescriptive view present in the literature regarding the role of trust in enhancing client satisfaction through the use of information systems. The research questions that underlay this study were based on discovering the extent and nature of mistrust between contractors and their clients. Through the use of a qualitative methodology, data were collected through responses from a semi-structured, open-ended questionnaire. By analyzing consistencies in the responses, the researcher used grounded theory to determine trends and consistencies. The results revealed that while contractors believed trust existed between contractors and clients, clients believed mutual trust was low despite the increased communication through emails and current information systems. By emphasizing the notion of mutual trust in the communication process, contractors can improve the image of the construction industry. The magnitude of social change could result in more successful and timely completion of projects saving millions of dollars.